Mercantile Bank shares entrepreneurs’ visionary spirit. With more than 50 years’ of experience, we know what it takes to run a successful business. Our personalised service, tailored solutions, transparent pricing and skilled, experienced and flexible teams can help you grow your business.

Our core focus is on Business and Commercial Banking. We provide a wide range of international and local banking services to professionals. Our Alliance Banking division offers credit card, debit card and payment services to businesses in the financial service industry, while our Treasury division provides customers with a full suite of foreign exchange products.

Capitec Bank Limited (Capitec Bank) acquired Mercantile Bank Holdings Limited (Mercantile) on 7 November 2019.

Mercantile is now part of Capitec, an exciting opportunity for the company to expand and diversify.

Mercantile offers a comprehensive range of products that cater to the banking needs of business, positioning them as a nimble and dynamic full-service bank. They strive to be the number one business bank in South Africa servicing the needs of entrepreneurs. It is a service driven organisation with passionate and motivated staff who know that banking is about people.

The product range includes transactional banking, lending, foreign exchange, deposits, payment/services and private banking exclusively for entrepreneurs.

For now, the two banks will be run independently with retail clients served in Capitec branches and business banking clients in Mercantile branches.

Four trends for quick service restaurants (QSR) we’ll see in 2021

Mercantile Bank Franchising

2020 was a trying year for business in general, and the hospitality industry is one of the industries that were hit the hardest. Conversely, however, this also meant that it set the stage for innovative thinking. Below are four trends we think that we will continue to see more of in this year with regards to the QSR franchise category.

1. Convenience will still be king
The pandemic has given even more priority to convenience, and we will continue to see different manifestations of this in 2021.

Most restaurants now offer some kind of convenience menu, even the traditional sit-down restaurants that appeal to a higher income market. Since many of their menu items lose their appeal in transit, a simpler and limited menu has been developed for takeaways, deliveries and curb-side collections.

Drive-thrus became top of mind for many concepts to ensure an alternative convenience offering to consumers on the go. Brands that require more time for food preparation have opted for a click-and-collect drive-thru offering to be able to offer a similar solution to the market and remain relevant.

Over the past few years, more franchises have opted for a portion of complimentary express food and coffee offering to their existing retail business, which appeals to the mass market. This has been a very common sight and proven successful with fuel stations to aid in the increase of customer conversion as well as the increase in basket spend per customer.

2. Ecommerce will remain strong
A huge percentage of restaurants have already jumped on the e-commerce bandwagon via an app and online orders. If they weren’t already using them earlier in the year, the pandemic definitely accelerated that change. Most of the franchise concepts have opted for third-party delivery services like Uber Eats, Mr D and OrderIn, as the logistics of managing your own fleet can be quite cumbersome, expensive and add to the franchisee’s burden rather than lessen it. Some brands have also re-invented themselves with these delivery services by creating their own virtual or dark kitchen brands, which exist only on third-party delivery services. By creating a dark kitchen within an existing, trading store, the restaurant can expand its customer base without having to further invest in infrastructure.

3. Loyalty and rewards programmes will feature more
As consumers continue to tighten their belts in 2021, loyalty to brands has become even more important. Some brands opt to drive this through loyalty and rewards programmes, although these can be quite expensive to set up. Rewards programmes can vary from having a physical card, an app or it can be as simple as inputting your cellphone number at the point of sale.

Loyalty initiatives are becoming increasingly important to encourage return customers, as well as new customers who may demand value for money from the places where they spend their hard-earned cash. For this reason, we think that no QSR will want to be left behind this year when it comes to encouraging repeat business from loyal consumers via loyalty and rewards programmes.

4. More restaurants will go vegan
With Veganuary behind us, there has been some interesting trends in the restaurant and QSR market in South Africa and globally relating to menu changes to accommodate plant-based meals. Seemingly more restaurants participated in Veganuary during January this year and introduced new plant-based options to their menus.

In South Africa, the vegan restaurant market is still very much in its infancy, but in 2021 we might see more vegan options becoming available. Many established mainstream restaurants now have plant-based options on their menu all year round and there is a trend of new vegan-focused concepts.

2020 no doubt brought us some unexpected surprises, which have set us on a certain trajectory for 2021. This will hopefully be a good year for the QSR category, as these franchises evolve, and embrace an innovative mindset. As Mercantile, we are committed to helping all our franchisees and franchisors find their way through 2021 and build solid businesses.

Capitec Bank Holdings Limited (Capitec or the group) is listed on the JSE. It owns the operating subsidiary Capitec Bank Limited (Capitec Bank) that acquired Mercantile Bank Holdings Limited (Mercantile) on 7 November 2019. Capitec Bank is the largest digital bank and the largest bank by active banking clients in South Africa. We focus on essential banking services and provide value for money, innovative transaction, saving, insurance and unsecured lending products to individuals. Through Mercantile we provide transaction, savings and unsecured lending products to small businesses.

Capitec simplifies banking. We aim to improve our clients’ financial lives. We place unwavering focus on our fundamentals and work towards influencing our clients’ financial behaviour positively. The future of banking in South Africa is dynamic and exciting. In our endeavour to put the client first we are constantly diversifying and expanding our business. Based on the same fundamentals that made us successful in the retail banking sector, we have a new opportunity to offer a digitally led, business banking solution for small to medium enterprises and entrepreneurs.

If you would like to know more about us, please visit our website

Our Mission - Our purpose and goal as a business:

  • We financially partner with you on your journey in creating a successful business

Our Vision - What we do as a business for the benefit of our clients and stakeholders:

  • We grow entrepreneurs through successful partnerships

Our Values - What we believe in and how we will behave:

  • We are Curious, We are Connected, We are Committed

  • We believe in the power of the individual to create and shape a successful future;

  • We believe in the importance of community and support;

  • We believe in doing things differently;

  • We believe in the value of lifelong relationships.

Our Belief - Why we do what we do and love doing it:

  • We believe entrepreneurs are visionary. Their world is multifaceted, constantly evolving and challenging.

  • We believe they require a dynamic level of service and understanding to help them succeed.

  • We believe only we can provide this.

What we did in 2019

Corporate social responsibility

1.   Baby Moses Baby Sanctuary – R15,000

The Foundation donated R15, 000 to Baby Moses Baby Sanctuary, a Non Profit and Public Benefit Organization registered with the Department of Social Welfare and the South African Revenue Services (SARS). Baby Moses Baby Sanctuary currently cares for 115 abused, neglected, abandoned and orphaned children, based in Gauteng on the West Rand and Bodibe and Modderspruit in the North West Province.

2.   Compass (Community Provision and Social Services) – R15,000

A donation of R15,000 was made to Compass for their Edenvale and Johannesburg homes. The NPO takes care of abundant, abused children and adults.

3.   Child Welfare Tshwane – R11,000

Child Welfare Tshwane (previously “Pretoria Kinder- en Gesinsorgvereniging”) is a registered, non-profit child protection organisation that has been caring for, protecting and empowering vulnerable children in Tshwane since 1918. They are based in Groenkloof, Pretoria, with easily accessible service points across the City and they offer social work services to all the children in the city, between the ages of 0 and 18. They are also active affiliate of Child Welfare South Africa.

4.   Children A loud – R15,000

Children a Loud was formed in 2013 with the aim to bring hope to approximately 200 abandoned and neglected children of Ocean View community in Cape Town. Through interventions such as counseling, life skills camp, academic support and parent workshops, they seek to break the cycle of violence, gangsterism, drug abuse, alcoholism and prostitution in the community.

5.   Thuthuka Education Upliftment Fund – R200,000

Ikusasa Student Financial Aid Programme is a successful multi-sector partnership between the private sector and various arms of government (Department of Labour, Education, Science and Technology) aimed at ensuring disadvantaged youth with potential are able to receive the education and support they cannot afford. In 2018, the organisation achieved a 90% pass success rate for students funded by them but the challenge they are facing for 2019 is they have more students then funding, therefore urgent assistance is required. The Mercantile bank Foundation donated R200, 000 to assist the two learners to continue with their studies into the third year.

6.   Cotlands Toy Library Programme – R20,000

Cotlands was fonded in 1936 when Matron Dorothy Reece, a nurse from the United States, doing missionary work in South Africa, found an abandoned baby on her doorstep. From historical roots as a baby sanctuary, Cotlands initiated its community based programmes in 1999, primarily focusing on HIV and nutrition, and later adding psychosocial and educational support to the programmes. Today, Cotlands offers early learning play-based opportunities to thousands of children in six of South Africa’s provinces.

7.   Qualibooks – R15,000

This is a reading intervention strategy by way of providing library book resources to create reading corners in schools that do not have the resources for the children. The organisation also conducts work training intervention programs for teachers who will be introduced into the schools over a period of 12 months. A complete monitoring, evaluation and monthly feedback report for a 12 month period is provided. The organisation would like to create an enthused reading culture that will enhance readership capabilities and improve the levels of literacy found in our schools. At the later part of 2018, a new series of 12 books was introduced for children between ages 5 to 11, which tell the Long Walk to Freedom Story of Mr. Mandela, in a pictorial, fun and informative way.

The bank subscribes to a sustainable future, and to this end, aims to ensure sustainable practices across the entire scope of its business activities and the activities of all stakeholders, both external and internal. The bank’s Sustainability Policy identifies and documents the themes, principles, strategy, objectives, management, performance and reporting of sustainability, with the aim of integrating sustainability into the culture of the bank, and aligning our sustainability strategy with our business strategy. As a member of the Banking Association of South Africa, the bank subscribes to the Association’s Code of Conduct for Managing Environmental and Social Risk. The Group’s sustainability themes are accordingly based on the Association’s Code and recommendations set out in King III, read with the JSE Sustainability Reporting Index criteria, and taking into account the size of our business and the community and industry that the Group operates in..

The broad categories of the Group’s Sustainability policy are:

  • Environment – materials, energy, water, emissions, effluent and waste, products and services

  • Society – education, employment practices, occupational health and safety, training and development and

  • Governance and related sustainability concerns – good corporate practices

The Board is responsible for ensuring that the bank operates as a responsible corporate citizen, and has set strategic guidelines for meeting sustainability requirements recognised by the bank, with the aim of translating its corporate values into sustainable business practices and interaction with all its stakeholders.